Russian President Vladimir Putin said that Moscow wasn't involved in the hacking of emails of the US Democratic Party, but thinks the release of the information was a benefit.
"At the state level, we certainly weren't involved in this," Putin said in an interview just two days before G20 meeting in China where he will meet US President Barack Obama and other world leaders.
Some American officials have claimed that Russian military intelligence was behind the hacking, which provoked a political scandal in the US by revealing apparent prejudice in the Democratic National Committee against Hillary Clinton's challenger for the presidential nomination, Bernie Sanders.
Putin said it wasn't important who conducted the hacking, but "what's important is that there was material that was released to the public.
"Does it even matter who hacked this data? The important thing is the content that was given to the public,” he said.
“There’s no need to distract the public’s attention from the essence of the problem by raising some minor issues connected with the search for who did it," he added. "But I want to tell you again, I don’t know anything about it, and on a state level Russia has never done this."
The hacked emails, released by activist group WikiLeaks in July, appeared to show favoritism within the Democratic National Committee (DNC) for presidential nominee Hillary Clinton and prompted the resignation of the body's chairwoman.
A computer network used by Clinton's campaign, and the party's fundraising committee for the U.S. House of Representatives were also hacked.
Clinton, who polls show as leading Donald Trump in the campaign for the U.S. presidential election in November, has said Russian intelligence services conducted a cyber attack against her party. Some officials have suggested Moscow is trying to influence the U.S. election.
Putin dismissed the allegations. "We have never interfered, are not interfering and do not intend to interfere in domestic politics," he said.
"We will carefully watch what happens and wait for the election results. Then we are ready to work with any American administration, if they want to themselves," he added.
Relations between Russia and United States hit a post-Cold War low in 2014 over the Ukraine crisis, and Washington and Moscow have since clashed over diverging policies in Syria.